February 16, 2007

Impressions of Singapore

I must say flying 14 hrs on Singapore Airlines Business Class is much nicer than flying 20 hrs on United Coach. What a huge difference! The food is better, the drinks are free, but most importantly you have wide enough seats and enough leg room to stretch out - and the seats recline nearly flat! You can actually sleep in some semblance of comfort.

Anyway, after our comfortable flight we had a very short stop in Hong Kong just enough time to wander around the airport a bit a whet our appetites for a longer visit sometime in the hopefully near future, then off to Singapore proper.

... and boy is Singapore proper.

Baggage claim is quick and painless. The customs and immigration lines are efficient and no-nonsense. There are scads of brochures and advertisements everywhere telling you about all the things you can do in Singapore. We contemplate taking transit, but with two large checked bags, even Debbie thinks a cab is a better idea.

This is the best cab I've ever taken. We walk up to the cab stand, we're directed to a parking space where a cab is just pulling in. The cabbie helps us load our luggage and we're off. No arguing about fares, we just tell him what hotel we want and off we go. The drive is smooth, traffic flows, people stay in their lanes and mostly obey the speed limit. We arrive at our hotel (The Shangri-La) only to discover that yet again we've been fooled by a small detail in the name, and are at the wrong hotel. We're at the Trader's Hotel by Shangri-La, not the Shangri-La. However this is quickly straightened out, the hotel puts us in another cab and we quickly arrive at the correct hotel. We check in and plan our next moves.

We want to visit hawker centers and eat hawker center food. Chicken Rice, Chilli Crab, Char Kwey Tiao, Laksa for sure and anything else that looks good. I want to check out some of the fabled electronics malls - Sim Lin Square for sure. Debbie wants bookstores, and to see if there's a Muji in Singapore. We both want to check out transit and go on the Night Safari.

Over the next few days we do all of these, and a few more things. Hawker centers are everything we hoped for. Electronics malls are cool but ultimately somewhat disappointing (mostly due to a weak dollar), Muji is a let down, but the Night Safari lives up to its advance billing. I'll put up details with pictures once I get a chance to process them...
Post a Comment